Lisbon, April 20, 2020 (Lusa) – About 700 thousand individual protection equipment were sent today from the Military Laboratory, in Lisbon, where they were stored, to reinforce care homes across the country, being distributed by the district Social Security centers, announced the minister.

The Minister of Labour, Solidarity and Social Security, Ana Mendes Godinho, was today at the Military Laboratory of Chemical and Pharmaceutical Products, in Lisbon, together with the Minister of National Defence, João Gomes Cravinho, and with the Assistant Secretary of State and Health , Jamila Madeira, to watch the lifting of the equipment, which were in the custody of that institution.

“These trucks come to serve as support and reinforcement for care homes, for all professionals who work in care homes and residential homes where people with disabilities live”, explained Ana Mendes Godinho, adding that the goal is to reinforce care homes with personal protective equipment, which they include not only surgical masks but also full equipment to deal with people who have tested positive for covid-19.

According to the minister, “today, about 700 thousand individual protective equipment are part of this cargo”, having already had a first delivery two weeks ago with around 200 thousand, the goal being “to reach the whole country”.

“They will be distributed through the district social security centers, which will make the distribution by the institutions at the level of each district and that will happen today with this transport that is happening, with the three trucks that will be taken across the country”, she added.

According to Ana Mendes Godinho, “two more distributions are planned to be made due to this permanent articulation that has been taking place with Infarmed and the Social Security Institute and with associations representing the social sector”, which identified the needs in the different institutions.

In the perspective of the Minister of Labour, Solidarity and Social Security, “the Armed Forces have played a key role in supporting this entire population that is in homes”.

For his part, Jamila Madeira explained that it is material purchased “within the scope of the acquisitions that the Ministry of Health makes for the National Health Service and for the ministries and the State that provide essential services to the pandemic operation covid-19”.

“All the material is aggregated here and then distributed to different entities”, he explained.

“The National Health Service is our biggest consumer and our biggest concern because it is people who are in the first line of combat, but the Ministry of Labor, Solidarity and Social Security is also the one that deals with the group at greatest risk, the elderly, and to protect home professionals ”, he justified.